Futurama 3 - 1981 - Futurama Festival 2022


Futurama 3 – 1981

FUTURAMA 3 BINGLEY HALL STAFFORD  5th and 6th of September 1981

Something weird happened in 1981, John Keenan had to move from Leeds to Bingley Hall in Stafford and not through his own choice! A London promoter called ‘Straight Music’ just completely nicked John’s idea and put his own show into Queens Hall and cheekily called it ‘Daze of Future Past’ on the 26th and 27th of September. John was well hacked off, this was daylight robbery on his home turf. It’s no wonder John was furious, he had poured blood, sweat and his own money into these festivals. John got his retaliation by moving the Futurama to Bingley Hall much earlier in the month and the result was two remarkable festival line ups. The people and bands didn’t mind, they had two great events to go to and let’s face it bands and fans don’t really care who the promoter is and as long as they’re great shows everyone wins, except maybe the promoters. Compared to the competition and madness of festival season these days it looks more like friendly rivalry. Now looking back the funny thing is, with fading memories people associate ‘Daze of Future Past’ as one of his JFK’s anyway. The fact John is still promoting shows in Leeds 40 years later showed he played the long game far better than his London rival. 

So, was this festival the birthplace of goth? It certainly has a strong claim as the line-up had included UK Decay, Theatre of Hate, Bauhaus, Virgin Prunes, Crown of Thorns and a new Leeds gang called the Sisters of Mercy.  Futurama 3 was a great festival with a staggering performance from Gang of Four, fire and fury from Theatre of Hate, a riot of colour and tribal drums from Bow Wow Wow and magical goth theatrics from Bauhaus. Also excellent were Sunday’s headliners,Scottish band, Simple Minds whose early albums were an electronic tour de force. The line-up for ‘Daze of Future Past’ is included below because they do complement well and many of the bands played both festivals adding to the confusion. 

Futurama 3 Saturday 05/09/ 1981: headliner:  Gang of Four with Bauhaus / Theatre of Hate / Simple Minds / Sisters of Mercy / 23 Skidoo / The Passions / The Human Condition (Jah Wobble/Jim Walker)  / A Flock of Seagulls / Crown of Thorns / OK Jive / Felt / Ponderosa Glee Boys / My Silent War 

Futurama 3 Sunday 06/09/1981: Headliner Simple Minds with Bow Wow Wow / B-Movie / Modern Eon / Blue Orchids / Virgin Prunes / UK Decay / Eyeless In Gaza / The Higsons / Section 25 / The Tea Set / Diagram Brothers / Ice House / Vena Vena  / Ludus / Doll by Doll / Richard Strange & Stevo from Some Bizarre Records who was DJ’ing but brought no records.

Daze of Future Past 26 /09/ 1981: Headliners: Echo and the Bunnymen with the Cramps / Bauhaus / Theatre of Hate / The Thompson Twins /Altered Images / Wall of Voodoo / Way of the West 

Daze of Future Past 27/ 09 / 1981: Gang of Four / Classix Nouveau / The Professionals / The Revillos / B-Movie / Bollock Brothers / Inner City Unit / The Past Seven Days / Miles over Matter (Japan, Killing Joke, Meteors, Tom Verlaine from Television all didn’t play the Sunday)